Trainer Mark Gatt had this greyhound prepared beautifully for the occasion, as he came into the race in peak form, with success in his previous four starts which included a 30.28 heat win. When it came time to step up and shine on the grand stage, the son of Spiral Nikita and Leprechaun Pace did not let him down, jumping to the lead and making his own luck on a way to a dominating win.
While much of the pre-race betting revolved around Heston Bale ($2.00 fav) and Glen Gallon ($3.30), Oaks Road was kept safe on the third line of betting, eventually starting the race at $5.80.
Anticipation was high to see if Glen Gallon could handle its middle box and repeat the flying 29.87 heat run, but unfortunately for connections it wasn’t to be. Glen Gallon began poorly and darted left into Mepunga Geordie ($27.00), allowing Oaks Road to fire to the front from box two. Heston Bale had begun fairly and was trying to muster along the rails, while local hope Uno Reltub ($18.80) had shown its customary dash from out wide.
Around the first turn and Oaks Road was in front by a length, however the race was about to change complexion. Uno Reltub pushed down hard towards the rail checking Heston Bale. This caused the record-breaking Victorian chaser to stumble and crash into Mepunga Geordie, who was again in the wrong place at the wrong time. Glen Gallon, Things Missing ($17.70) and Autoamerican ($23.70) were all then hampered by the faltering Heston Bale, and now the field had strung right out.
Oaks Road continued on its merry way, oblivious to the carnage behind it and was nearly six lengths in front by the time they entered the back straight. Uno Reltub was trying to bridge the gap, but it was a large hill to climb, as Victorian Lektra Jay ($28.00) started to warm up behind it.
Turning for home and it was a one-act affair. Oaks Road had run them ragged and gone on to win by seven lengths stopping the clock at 30.22. The $140,000 winners’ cheque is the fourth biggest in this country, and will progress the bank balance to a healthy $290,000. Owned by Edwin Kingswell, the November 2008 whelping has now amassed 14 victories and 15 placings from 37 racetrack appearances.
Outsider of the field, Lektra Jay, was a strong performance to gain second place for Andrea Dailly and owner Phil Lenehan, while the consistent Autoamerican for Steve McKenna and Tony Forte recovered to get third place prizemoney. Littermate of the winner, Things Missing, followed them in fourth place ahead of the tiring Uno Reltub in fifth.
Meanwhile earlier in the night, the consolation event was won in grand style by local chaser Hot Irish. It was a fitting result, as the Ben Abercrombie runner had been narrowly beaten by Things Missing the week prior, and was listed as first reserve for the main event. Winning by a length and quarter in 30.47, the son of Premier Fantasy is now up to 13 wins from 25 starts for owner Damon Fardig.